Some local officials opposed to armed guards at every school

Some local officials opposed to armed guards at every school

After remaining silent for a week, the National Rifle Association threw itself into the national gun debate Friday by claiming the country can best protect students by stationing armed guards at every school.

That's unlikely to happen locally, according to initial reaction by some school and police officials Friday.

The gun association's Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre issued the call for more armed guards a week after Adam Lanza killed 26 children and staff at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn.

"I call on Congress today to act immediately, to appropriate whatever is necessary to put armed police officers in every school — and to do it now, to make sure that blanket of safety is in place when our children return to school in January," LaPierre said.

The idea of having armed guards at all schools, including elementary schools, did not sit well with either of the presidents of the Champaign and Urbana school boards.

"As a parent, I'm not supportive of putting armed security guards in front of all our schools," said Champaign board President Stig Lanesskog on Friday.

He said he supports the police officers currently stationed in the middle and high schools and said having them around has worked well. Those officers, called school resource officers, mostly focus on community-building, he said.

As a board member, Lanesskog said, he believes the issue raised by the NRA on Friday is one to talk about not only "in the heat of the moment" but to reflect on over the next couple months, especially about "how we're balancing creating an environment that may draw away from the school feel that we want versus the level of security" that armed guards may provide.

Having someone walking around the school with a weapon changes the atmosphere in a school, said Urbana school board President John Dimit.

"I didn't like the idea of arming school personnel, and I also don't really like the idea of having to have an armed presence everywhere," he said.

Urbana schools have school resource officers in the middle school and high school. Current Champaign Police Chief Anthony Cobb was the first school resource officer in Urbana. He declined to comment for this article.

Resource officers are part of a community-based police model that focuses on building relationships with students, considered the biggest deterrent to inappropriate behavior, Dimit said.

How can police or teachers fulfill their jobs as role models "when you're packing heat?" Dimit asked. "I just think it teaches the wrong lesson."

Although staffing armed guards at schools is an idea to be considered and discussed, there shouldn't be a knee-jerk reaction, said Larry Thomason, public safety director with the city of Danville.

It also would not be financially feasible to put officers at every school in the district, officers said. It would put a financial burden on the school districts and the municipalities, they said.

"I understand what they (NRA) are saying, but there are many things to be considered as they go forward, and I'm not ready to say there should be a police officer in every school. In my view, that would be a knee-jerk reaction. You have to look at costs and a lot of factors here," Thomason said.

The Champaign County sheriff's office staffs one full-time school resource officer in St. Joseph-Ogden High School, another in the Unity School District in Tolono, plus one assigned on a part-time basis to Carrie Busey School in Savoy. All of them are armed.

"Their function is not to be a front-door guard," Sheriff Dan Walsh said. Their primary duties are related mostly to education, including teaching driver safety, talking about bullying and similar topics, he said.

Officers spend most of their time in the high schools but also visit other schools too. This is the first year they've had anyone at Carrie Busey; the school opened in its new location this fall. Next week deputies will undergo "rapid response" training in Carrie Busey to prepare them for possible incidents. That training had been scheduled before the Sandy Hook shootings.

If trained, armed officers are stationed at every school, "it would make it hard for someone to do what happened in Connecticut — not impossible, but it gives the shooter some aggressive opposition," Walsh said.

However, his office has about 55 sworn law officers on staff, not including courthouse officers, he pointed out.

To staff all the grade schools, middle schools and high schools in its district with trained deputies, "we would have no one on patrol," Walsh said.

In the last several years, the Danville school district and Danville Police Department have partnered to assign three full-time police officers in the Danville public school system, one each at South View Middle School, North Ridge Middle School and Danville High School. The school district pays the majority of the police officers' salaries and benefits, and the city picks up the costs during the summer months when they return to city patrols.

Rather than arming staff members, Dimit said, the Urbana school district relies on the Urbana Police Department.

It is "extremely responsive" to any incident in the schools, often arriving within a minute or two, he said.

He also said panic buttons and cameras can make a difference if someone is trying to force his way into a school.

Champaign and Urbana schools review their security procedures on a regular basis, the board presidents said. Since the Sandy Hook shootings, Champaign Superintendent Judy Wiegand has met with Cobb to review security procedures in place at the schools.

"We continue to have administration review those to make sure we're doing everything we think is reasonable in that area," Lanesskog said.

Added Dimit: "Our security setup is constantly evolving as we learn new things."

News-Gazette staff writers Julie Wurth and Tracy Moss contributed to this article.

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EL YATIRI wrote on December 22, 2012 at 9:12 am
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Why stop at schools?  How about machine gun nests at all shopping malls, tanks and helicopter gunships patrolling city streets?  


spangwurfelt wrote on December 22, 2012 at 9:12 am

I think it's time the NRA stepped forward and started endorsing the private tactical nuclear weapon. It would be perfectly in line with their current stance of "no limits of any kind on any weapon at any time, no matter how many six-year-olds pay the price for our extremism." After all, atomic bombs don't kill people, people kill people.

cretis16 wrote on December 22, 2012 at 11:12 am

Maybe we can just light a candle and sing together. If teacher's were armed, they could take out the shooter easily. Quit whimpin out on savin lives.

mark taylor's ghost wrote on December 22, 2012 at 12:12 pm

That's right. Why are liberals always wimphing out on saving lives??????2?

We need more guns in schools and then, just like homes with guns in them, there will be more gun related death. But that's just the price of protecting outselves from more gun related deaths caused by bad guys.

Getting killed by a bad is sooooooooooo much worse than getting killed by a good guy.



spangwurfelt wrote on December 22, 2012 at 3:12 pm

I just want to know where I can buy these miracle bullets that only kill bad guys, because that seems to be the fantasy these "the cure for guns is more guns" people seem to have playing in their minds.

mark taylor's ghost wrote on December 23, 2012 at 6:12 pm

As a known NON REAL AMERICAN, you don't have access to those magic bullets. Only Hop Along Cassidy types like me and the others who understand that THE ANSWER IS MOAR GUNZ have those bullets.

But don't worry, as Wayne Lapierre says, once we get enough MORE GUNS out there, there will be enough of us Hop Along Cassidys to ride up and save the day.

Hoppity hoppity hoppity hop.

EL YATIRI wrote on December 23, 2012 at 8:12 am
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Excellent and most logical suggestion (if your mind's logic is that of an extremist teatard)

gfpd wrote on December 22, 2012 at 9:12 am

They are only opposed to this because it came from the NRA.  If it came from some hippy leftist organization they would be all over it.

spangwurfelt wrote on December 22, 2012 at 9:12 am

Sorry, a ridiculously dumb idea is a ridiculously dumb idea no matter where it comes from. Just ask these GOP staffers:

spangwurfelt wrote on December 22, 2012 at 9:12 am

This has to be, by far, the dumbest thing the NRA has ever said, and the national wave of brutal condemnation they're getting for it is completely well deserved.

tattoo58 wrote on December 22, 2012 at 9:12 am

Only a good guy with a gun can stop a bad guy with a gun.

spangwurfelt wrote on December 22, 2012 at 10:12 am

Yes, that is the cliche, and I'm sure we're going to be hearing it a lot from people who let the NRA do their thinking for them over the next few weeks.

But what do the American people think? The polls are clear. More of them support than oppose the banning of semi-automatic weapons. More of them support than oppose the sales of high-capacity clips. 62% of Americans would support a ban on the sale and manufacture of the AK-47.

So go ahead and parrot the line from Wayne LaPierre's disastrous "press conference," but recognize that most Americans don't see it your way.

Sid Saltfork wrote on December 22, 2012 at 10:12 am

Whether one agrees, or disagrees about armed guards in schools; the banning of assault rifles, and high capacity magazines needs to be addressed.  I found it hypocritical that the NRA cries out for armed guards in schools; but cries out against banning assault rifles, and high capacity magazines at the same time.  Why does it have to be one, or the other?  Why not both?  I suspect the reason is money.  The public would be paying for the armed guards while the gun manufacturers behind the NRA still make big profits.

Every member of Congress who supports anti-gun control should have their face, and name published in every newspaper across the country.  Let the public know who is supporting the gun industry, and how much they received in "campaign donations".


mark taylor's ghost wrote on December 22, 2012 at 11:12 am

The price of protecting ourselves from govermint tyranny is putting hundreds of thousands of armed govermint employees in our schools at the cost of raising the budget by billions of dollars.


bearwaster wrote on December 23, 2012 at 5:12 am
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So now this is a money issue to you? It might mean more Jobs. I think we should spend more of the homeland security money on manpower instead of equiptment, that sits and gathers dust. think of how many new Law enforcement officer's saleries can be paid with the money that is distibuted for these dust collectors.

mark taylor's ghost wrote on December 23, 2012 at 5:12 pm

Okay, so a 100% tax on guns and a 200% tax on all ammo should start working towards the more than 6 billion security guards in every school would cost.

And what about mass killings by gun in malls, restaurants, parks...

Security guards everywhere. Armed and paid for by Big Govermint. That's what you and Wayne Lapierre are arguing for.

syzlack wrote on December 22, 2012 at 6:12 pm

Presumably you think you are a good guy.  I have serious doubts about that.

vcponsardin wrote on December 22, 2012 at 11:12 am

If a preschooler hits another preschooler with a rock, the solution is NOT to give all preschoolers rocks.

Champaignite wrote on December 22, 2012 at 11:12 am

This is of course assuming that if the school had had an armed guard that they would have been at the exact right place in the school at the exact right time. Then you have to assume that one armed guard with one small gun could outgun a person with automatic weapons without getting shot in the process. While it is certainly possible, I tend to doubt that an armed guard in Newtown would have had much impact. I teach in a high school that has a full-time officer but it also has at least 12 sets of doors scattered all over the place. If someone came in on the south side of the building, it would take a few minutes for an officer to get there if they were on the north side of the building. By that time, lots of bad things could happen. Armed guards at schools are not the answer to preventing this type of tragedy. Unlike a bank that has a guard in the lobby, most schools have multiple doors (even though many are locked down, they can still be accessed with force or perseverance) and are spread out over different floors and over lots of space. The comparison just doesn't fit in the slightest.

Donwayne wrote on December 22, 2012 at 12:12 pm

Armed law official at school?? why not have the saftey put in place after all you pay to guard your property or business usually by an armed guard, oh and what about your money you want it protected by an armed guard. Are people so ignorant that they belive there treasures deserve an armed guard that they dont realize the true treasers we should protect are our children. The firearms did not kill the evil person did, just think a minute a horrible thought what if some worthless coward drove through a school yard with a car through children how many would we loose, or other unthinkable things they could do to cause such a great number of losses. An dont kid yourself this country has lots of machinest that could make weapons of the same rounds capability's. We as no other place in the world should see this loss of children one is way to many but mabey you should just think of how we best protect the most valuable assets of this great nation our children, and quit making stupid laws that only good law abbiding citezens will follow, the bad guys could care less about the laws. God bless America and our children

Sid Saltfork wrote on December 22, 2012 at 2:12 pm

The gun control debate is coming down to the lowest levels of intelligence in America, the members of Congress that receive campaign donations from the NRA, and the NRA's funding from the gun industry versus the intelligent, and sane citizens.  Years of NRA propaganda coupled with conspiracy theory, and the lack of mental health have brought this country to gun nut madness.  It will bring an end to the U.S.A. if it continues.

A comprehensive background check of prospective gun buyers, and owners should include a check on criminal history, mental illness history, and an intelligence test.  Just like driver's licenses are for a period of time, and need to be renewed; firearm owners licensing should be subject to renewal with a comprehensive background check also. 

syzlack wrote on December 22, 2012 at 6:12 pm


Commonsenseman wrote on December 22, 2012 at 4:12 pm

This is a great idea, those of you who are against it are foolish and naive to think we live in a loving and kind society, "right place right time" when armed offiers are present I guarantee you these cowards will pick an easier target, arent your kids worth the money to pay for this? As for so called "assault weapons" any weapon pointed at me is an "assault weapon"  Did you know the biggest school killing was in 1927 in Bath,  Michigan, kids were killed with bombs.  

Sid Saltfork wrote on December 22, 2012 at 6:12 pm

Like I said; "the lowest levels of intelligence" support the NRA, and it's crusade against gun control.  What a misnomer tag,

I do not like belittling people; but being against some gun control right now is callous, and dumb.

Commonsenseman wrote on December 22, 2012 at 7:12 pm

Sid, you may not like it but I have a constitutional right to bear arms, knee jerk emotional repsonses like yours are useless in the real world, only an armed counter response could have saved the children of Sandy Hook.  Its callous of you to blame the millions of lawabiding citizens in this country who own guns for the act of one crazed evil man.  Do you also blame all muslims for 9/11?  "Gun control" is impossible in this country, noone will turn in their weapons, more and more Americans arm themselves each day to protect themselves from these people.  How many people will voluntarily disarm in this country? What you ask for is to ignite the flames of civil war in this country.

rsp wrote on December 22, 2012 at 8:12 pm

Perhaps if his mother had locked up her guns it wouldn't have happened. Or not kept them in the home, knowing as she did that her son was unstable. Why is it so difficult for gun owners to be responsible for their guns. Had she have done so the kids would be alive. 

spangwurfelt wrote on December 22, 2012 at 9:12 pm

"you may not like it but I have a constitutional right to bear arms"

Which arms, exactly? Do you have a constitutional right to an atomic bomb?

I'm serious. An atomic bomb is an armament. Do you, personally, have a constitutional right to an atomic bomb?

If not, why not, exactly?

syzlack wrote on December 22, 2012 at 6:12 pm

Right, and now the namby pamby librools have made it so you can't go buy dynamite at the local hardware store anymore. 

rsp wrote on December 22, 2012 at 11:12 pm

We can buy other things though.

STM wrote on December 22, 2012 at 8:12 pm

Commonsenseman, you're probably the only person who thinks you exhibit common sense. There is nothing in the constitution that says you have a right to own a gun. If you're part of a militia, you get to keep it and bear it, that's all.  If you're up for a purists' view of the founder's intentions, you might by extension, believe those rights only belong to white, land-owning, men above the age of 18.

Of course that's silly.  So is the notions that guns and gun-related violence will go away over night.  Like a poisoned landscape, we've polluted the country with weapons beyond our society's ability to control them.  Similar to the land around Fukushima or Chernobyl, it may take our country decades, or generations, or longer to get things to a managable level.  We have to stop looking for a magic bullet (pun intended) to eliminate the problem of gun violence overnight.

That said, more guns, patrol officers and armed teachers will not solve the problem.  To effectively patrol a school, you would need a state of the art video system to watch each entry, hallway, classroom, broom closet, gymnasium, etc. Even then, what's to stop a sniper from just parking across the street and picking off students (a-la beltway sniper style). Where do you stop putting officers? Where do you stop adding guns? Where do you stop adding surveillance?

A resource officer didn't stop the massacre at Columbine.  One even took four shots at 60 yards. The gunman (kid) turned and shot back, then went inside the school and started killing.

Wayne LaPierre and the NRA offer the same ol' same ol' for everything.  More guns. It's time to work around these ignorant, noisy, jerks and get things done.  Nobody needs an assault weapon except the military or the police. Under no circumstances do we need guns in schools.

Commonsenseman wrote on December 22, 2012 at 10:12 pm

Guns exist and we need them in schools to protect our children. You may not understand this but police officers are effective at deterring criminals.  No system works perfectly, would you rather do nothing?  Some people advocate for peace, but they have no way to enforce it.  Those of you who demand people disarm are also for the Patriot Act right? hypocrites.

rsp wrote on December 22, 2012 at 11:12 pm

There are a lot of us who don't like the patriot act.

STM wrote on December 23, 2012 at 6:12 am

Actually, I am a gun owner and opposed to the Partiot Act. These two characteristics have nothing to do with each other. Most people opposed to the Patriot Act are opponents of the gun lobby (like me). Remember Commonesenselessman, it was your VP Cheney and hawkish pro-gun neocons who shoved the Patriot Act down our throats. Guns are killing our children. We need strict controls over their sale and use. Calling us names do not help your case. You are wrong, share in the blame for senseless deaths and we are right. Snap out of it boy!

thorx wrote on December 23, 2012 at 12:12 pm

STM, I don't know who you are but you should be in charge.  The most reasonable response to a complex problem that I've seen on the NG site.  Well done.


STM wrote on December 23, 2012 at 3:12 pm

Thanks thorx, I'm a gun owner and not a "gun-grabbing lib" and I appreciate someone with the depth to understand the problem goes much further than the simple "take 'em or keep 'em" arguments.  Guns have become a serious problem in this country and the one-dimensional approach of the gun lobby and it's parrots has grown tiresome.  Thanks again thorx.

SKS3777 wrote on December 27, 2012 at 12:12 pm

Good commentary!

Illini Libertarian wrote on December 22, 2012 at 8:12 pm

Okay, let's put an armed "resource officer" at every school instead of guards; the school board presidents seem to have a problem with titles. I feel safer knowing that my kids have an officer at school for a number of reasons: breaking up fights, watching for gang activity, watching for drug activity, and protecting the students and staff from criminals regardless of their weapon of choice.

Besides, there are dozens of officers at every illini football game but only one at every school; and attendance is about the same.

rsp wrote on December 22, 2012 at 9:12 pm

I'm really concerned about the level of gang activity and drug dealing amongst the kindergarteners in the local schools. Hopefully they can get right on that. I mean, have you heard a bunch of five year olds singing "the wheels on the bus"?

Illini Libertarian wrote on December 22, 2012 at 10:12 pm

Wow, now I see the ignorance that Sid was referring to. For those commenters who are unaware, the schools in this area tend to house multiple class levels in one building. That means that kindergartners are in the same building as first through fifth graders. Is it safe to say that rsp hates children? That's okay, I respect your freedom to think differently than I.

Commonsenseman wrote on December 22, 2012 at 10:12 pm

The level of inaction and irresponsibility of some people in the field of education is so obvious. Why isnt anyone asking them to take responsiblity, a teacher told kids at Sandy Hook not to worry, the sounds were only "construction" and then locked the door, how about running  away is a better tactic rather than waiting to die. This is the mindset of todays educators. To those of you advocating for gun control, the Constitution was designed to protect those in the minority, Hitler disarmed the Jews, do you agree with that too? did it work? as for assault weapon the musket was the assault weapon of its day, you cant uninvent firearms.  Shooters were stopped by armed citizens  in Pearl MS, the Appalachian School of Law and the New Life Church Shooting.  There is so much hatred from those who oppose protecting children properly, how dare you blame the 45% of Americans who own guns for this act.  Blame those in the school district who oppose protecting children.

rsp wrote on December 22, 2012 at 11:12 pm

Where exactly did you expect them to run to with a class of five and six year olds? Do you have any rational idea of how slow they run? Especially from a bullet? And you want to blame the schools? Do you have any idea how you sound? If one child falls do you leave them behind? Are you at all aware that one of the tactics the killers explored in Columbine was to get everyone to flee the school and to pick them off as the fled? What then. You would blame them for fleeing with children who couldn't possibly get away when they should have waited for help. Rather convenient for you to sit in the safety of your home and second guess, isn't it. 

Commonsenseman wrote on December 23, 2012 at 6:12 pm

Have you ever tried to catch a bunch of kids its like herding cats they run pretty quickly. Your claim about the tactics used at Colombine are untrue.  My critique is the lack of planning and lack of a coherent plan, teachers who told their children not to worry "its just construction"  ignored the danger.  If your door cannot stand a sustained attack fleeing would have been a better response, Sandy Hook is a one story building escaping would have been possible, teachers in this country need to wake up.  They need to protect our children and if they cant do it they need to accept the help form the police to do so.

mark taylor's ghost wrote on December 23, 2012 at 6:12 pm

"Have you ever tried to catch a bunch of kids its like herding cats they run pretty quickly."

Once again, commonsense, you live up to your name.

rsp wrote on December 24, 2012 at 8:12 am

I didn't say anything about the tactics used in Columbine. There was evidence they considered forcing people out of the school. Just because children can outrun you doesn't mean they can outrun a killer. I think it's safe to say you aren't a safety expert. Sometimes it's better to secure yourself in place until help comes. Part of that with a group of small children is keeping them quiet. You do that by reassuring them, not but pulling your hair out and screaming "we're all going to die!". Doing that would just attract the killer's attention. The goal was to make their rooms look empty. They had no way of knowing what was outside of their rooms, let alone outside of the school. 

It must be nice to sit in judgement of teachers and children who died from the safety of your home. 

mark taylor's ghost wrote on December 23, 2012 at 6:12 pm


Totally within the boundaries of normal, reasonable discourse.

You're not a barking loon for COMPARING GUN CONTROL ADVOCATES TO NAZIS AND HITLER!!!!!!!!!!!11

And school shootings are TOTALLY THE TEACHERS' FAULT.

It's not at all crazy to think gun control advocates ARE JUST LIKE HITLER AND THE NAZIS and to BLAME THE TEACHERS FOR SCHOOL SHOOTINGS.

rsp wrote on December 22, 2012 at 10:12 pm

Those fifth graders are dangerous too. Better put a guard on them to keep them in line. So I'm ignorant and I hate children because you didn't like what I said? Good thing there wasn't a gun handy. You might have gone beyond name-calling.

Bulldogmojo wrote on December 22, 2012 at 11:12 pm

The whole idea of creating a free society with a rule of law was to be able to live our lives without having to feel threatened. If we feel so threatened by our society that we feel compelled to prepare for armed battle everyday then we are no longer free.

Sid Saltfork wrote on December 23, 2012 at 10:12 am

Bulldogmojo;  Good comment.

The political partisanship in this country has added to the gun control debate.  Citizens mix politics on every subject.  The common good has been disregarded for the sake of "libs" versus "right wingers".  I do not see it getting any better even when multiple mass murders have been committed recently.  More will happen before the year 2013 is out.  There is no point discussing any subject whether it is gun control, or the fiscal cliff when logic, and reason are disregarded.  I do not expect Congress to do anything on gun control, or the fiscal cliff due to offending their individual bases.  The country has dumbed down.

bearwaster wrote on December 23, 2012 at 4:12 am
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The only reason the board president does'nt want armed guards in the schools is that it might mean a cut in pay.


Champaignite wrote on December 23, 2012 at 9:12 pm

School board members serve for free.  They are not paid.  Nice try though.

mark taylor's ghost wrote on December 23, 2012 at 3:12 pm

Columbine had armed guards -- that sure averted the slaughter.

Lanza's mom had a ton of guns -- they sure protected her.

Yep -- more guns. That sure is the answer.

Commonsenseman wrote on December 23, 2012 at 5:12 pm

Colombine had one armed security officer for a very large school, rumor is he was given this assignment due to his inability to qualify with his weapon, I have previously listed a number of places where armed individuals stopped attacks, no solution is perfect, I cannot see any reason for any parent to not want a police officer stationed at their childs school unless they have some kind of political agenda or dislke police officers.  The Colombine shooters had a well organized plan, They used bombs shotgun and handgun rounds for their killings, they practiced for months ahead of time.  Weapons exist you cant uninvent them, the only way to protect our children is to identify these people and use force when they attack.

mark taylor's ghost wrote on December 23, 2012 at 6:12 pm

Ah, so we need armies of security guards in schools. Maybe 10 per school? or 100? And with excellent screening, training, and equipment, all paid for by us.

So, even larger armies of new govermint employees screened, trained and paid by all of us, to the tune, now, of upwards of 60 BILLION dollars. Or 600 BILLION.

I think we'll have to tax guns at 1000% and ammo at about 5000% to cover a fraction of that tax bill.

SKS3777 wrote on December 27, 2012 at 12:12 pm

Very well said!!

hambone wrote on December 24, 2012 at 8:12 am
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How come the article's headline does not read "Some local officials are for armed guards at every school"?  I ask this because if some are against, some are for.  NG, your bias is showing.


Sid Saltfork wrote on December 24, 2012 at 2:12 pm

Which ones are for it?

highspeed wrote on December 27, 2012 at 5:12 am

The school that the Obama kids go to, along with David Gregory`s kids have a staff of 12 security officers. Bunch of hypocrites

Sid Saltfork wrote on December 27, 2012 at 2:12 pm

The article indicates "local officials" are opposed to armed guards at every school.  It is not about D.C., or Texas.  It is about "local" school officials in east central Illinois. 

45solte wrote on December 27, 2012 at 8:12 am

'Must every tragic mass shooting bring out the shrill ignorance of “gun control” advocates?'

STM wrote on December 27, 2012 at 11:12 am

What's so "shrill" about wanting to reconsider the assault weapons ban or banning high-capacity magazines?  The only shrill I hear beside one-trick pony Wayne LaPierre are the guys who need to compensate for something by needing more and bigger guns.  The one common factor in ALL gun violence is the "gun."  The NRA has nothing to offer our society but scenarios where everyone carries a gun.  That would be a cluster___.

As to our president's children going to schools with armed guards, it might have something to do with them being our president's children. Would you propose he give up his Secret Service detail as well?

So far the comments from people seeking to tighten control of dangerous firearms have been diverse and for the most part thoughtful.  All I hear from the "pro-gun" types is the same ol' same ol'.

...and a lot of it is shrill.


Sid Saltfork wrote on December 27, 2012 at 2:12 pm

45solte; You do not think that people should address the issue of gun control after "every tragic mass shooting"?  There were many tragic mass shootings this year; and the year is not out yet.

SKS3777 wrote on December 27, 2012 at 12:12 pm

I agree that the NRA is stepping way over the edge on this one!  They are so fearful that they won't have their power.  This is a complex problem that requires close examination to uncover the best solution(s).  Posting armed guards in schools next to small children is just nuts!  Who on earth thinks that this can be a positive move for the mental and emotional health of a bunch of 5 and 6 year olds!  This Sandyhook situation is not a trend.  It's an isolated incident.  People with mental illness will always find ways to do inappropriate things, without proper medical help.  Crazy people do crazy things.  Do we want to put armed guards in movie theatres?  People are outraged at what happened and I am as well.  But let's not throw civilization into the pit.  I believe that assault weapons need to be outlawed.  And yes, then only outlaws will have them.  I'm aware.  But then we can tackle the problem better.  At least in this case, the kid would not have had access to such rapid fire weapons and some adults might have stood a chance against him.

Commonsenseman wrote on December 27, 2012 at 9:12 pm

How will you outlaw so called "assault weapons" how will you take them from  the homes of hundreds of thousands of people who legally own them?

The analogy of cars and guns is valid both are inanimate objects, incapable of  causing harm without a humans influence.

Firearms protect the rights of minorities in this nation.

There is no reason not to have police officers protecting our children.  

If armed guards arent needed to protect our children, then the President doesnt need them either, arent your kids just as important as his?

SaintClarence27 wrote on January 23, 2013 at 10:01 am

1) There are several reasons not to have police officers in schools. a) there are not enough police officers to do this - not even close b) there is not money for training, c) they likely wouldn't have a measurable effect, and d) any positive effect would cause a much worse problem with missing 100,000 police officers on the street.

2) While my kids are just as important to me, my kids are by no means under the same threat. Further, Secret Service officers have advanced training in these situations - police officers do not. 

SaintClarence27 wrote on January 23, 2013 at 10:01 am

3) Firearms very rarely protect anything in this nation. They much more frequently take away the right to life, minorities included.

4) Cars and guns are not both used for causing harm as a primary use.

5) "Assault weapon" would first have to be defined, which no one has done, as there hasn't even been legislation written, much less voted on.

Bulldogmojo wrote on December 27, 2012 at 11:12 pm

The argument of "guns protect Obama and his children so we should have the same protection" is not a logical argument. The secret service isn't trained to protect Obama and his inner circle or a specific persona they are trained to protect the continuity of government and the sovereign authority of the United States and its constitution. THAT is the distinction.  Oswald, Hinckley, Booth, Fromme and the like, all loners and losers with their own agendas of seeking instant relevence at the end of a gun. Now the validation of this insane and violent ideology of self absorption is taking on formal shape through the NRA's rabid protectionism of not the 2nd amendment but its real mission of maintaining its membership dollars by any means necessary mainly through a message of posse comitatus paranoia. This doomsday-prepper mentality is an infection that is twisting the 2nd Amendment principles from one of a collective and democratic principle to that of the self righteous indignation of the delusional hunkered down for the apocalypse that never comes.

How cars and guns are different...

People don't have a national organization purposed to keep their ownership of cars and how many a secret. Its sitting right there in my driveway for anyone to see.

Cars were designed for a practical means of getting from one place to another. Guns were designed to kill humans and animals in that order.

Cars can be lethal when misused, Guns were designed to always be lethal when used.

Cars are engineered to be more efficient on fuel and safety. Guns are engineered to be more and more lethal.

People who have to have the difference between cars and guns explained to them should not be allowed to use either one.

Commonsenseman wrote on December 28, 2012 at 7:12 pm

Guns are designed to be used for many reasons  hunting, target shooting and  protecting yourself from other humans.  Guns can be lethal when used to protect yourslf from those who wish to do you harm, or the mere presence of a firearm in your posession will cause evil people to seek an easier victim.  People dont tell you about their firearms because they fear people trying to disarm them and deny them the basic human right of self protection as is happening now.  The inanimate object analogy is valid in my opinion, you are entitled to disagree the Constituiton gives you that right as it gives me the right ot bear arms, why are you anti human rights people so angry? why all your venomous tirades?

yates wrote on December 28, 2012 at 10:12 am

 Having guns is just like having abortion. Both kill. The main difference is helpless babies never have the option of arming themselves. But that's changing the subject...right?

BillD88 wrote on December 30, 2012 at 7:12 am

Right.  Now quit changing the subject.

Bulldogmojo wrote on December 28, 2012 at 11:12 am

As a man I would never presume I was entitled to by my vote or action to intrude into the conversation and treatment between a woman and her physician in regard to her reproductive choices including abortion which the supreme court has ruled is a legal medical procedure. That being said what does the subject of legal abortion have to do with the subject of this article we are commenting on entitled "Some Local Officials Opposed to Armed Guards at Every school"?

The uber conservatives who shout to the heavens for their "God given" rights are the first ones to insist women be shackled to their reproductive cycles and compulsory reproduction.

"The person who is certain, and who claims divine warrant for his certainty, belongs now to the infancy of our species." ~ Christopher Hitchens

highspeed wrote on December 28, 2012 at 4:12 pm

As everyone on here keeps bashing, the idea is taking hold. Utah is teaching gun classes to teachers, Texas is allowing them to carry.  Arizona is following suit. Say what you want but there has been example after example of what Wayne Lapierre said; "Only way to stop a bad man with a gun is a good guy with a gun. Prisoner got a hold of a cops`gun and started shooting at the cops, and guess what the cops shot back and killed him!!!!! 

Sid Saltfork wrote on December 28, 2012 at 5:12 pm

Yeah; teachers will have to make sure that the 5, and 6 year olds don't grap their gun thinking it is a toy.  Sure, arm the teachers with kids all around them throughout the day.  Teachers just caught heck from most of you commenters over their pensions, summers off, and your kids not keeping pace in education compared to the rest of the world.  Now, they are supposed to be armed guards for your kids also.   If you have to insist on armed guards in the schools, it is a compromise; but not the teachers who are already underpaid.  What is next?  Arming the kids?

Commonsenseman wrote on December 28, 2012 at 7:12 pm

A firearm is a responsibiltiy, noone is suggsting a  teacher leave a firearm lying around a classroom.  In many parts of  the world teachers are armed.  I have no ill feelings about teachers pensions, not all teachers are capable of operating a firearm, some are some arent,  kids deserve safety in schools where they are targets, if that means real police officers patrol schools, I think thats great

Sid Saltfork wrote on December 28, 2012 at 7:12 pm

If the teacher is not leaving a firearm laying around, where are they going to keep it?  Are they going to lock it up in a locker?  Are they going to keep it holstered in sight of the kids?  Sure... you see nothing wrong with children seeing adults like teachers packing heat.

If the "real police officers" are going to be in the schools, more of them will need to be hired.  Property taxes will have to be raised significantly to pay for the additional officers.  Their pensions, and the teachers pensions will have to be paid in full by the state, or the community.  The teachers pensions have not been funded by the state presently; and the police officers pensions have not been funded either.  Remember pension reform?  All of the additional cost will be the result of the lack of gun control, and mental health services.

Of course; gun nuts will howl either way.  They will howl about the big jump in property taxes, and mental health budgets; and they will howl about any reasonable gun control.  Obsessed gun nuts will howl about everything except their right to maintain their arsenals. 

Commonsenseman wrote on December 28, 2012 at 8:12 pm

we find ways to pay for foreign aid and foreign wars, I'm sure we can find ways to pay for police protection of our children. Are they not worth it? your stereotyping of people who own firearms as "gun nuts" shows your lack of understanding, I'm sure many of your friends and neighbors own firearms.  Are the Obama kids being harmed by having armed security at their school? Why are you so obsessed with disarming law abiding citizens?  these rights protect your civil liberties including your right to disagree, you are going off on a tangent, this isnt about pension reform its about protecting kids in the most reasonable and practical way.  you cant disarm the roughly half of Americans who own firearms, they have rights whether you agree or not

mark taylor's ghost wrote on December 30, 2012 at 11:12 am

So, based on the comments on this thread, we now now the News-Gazette considers it perfectly acceptable to call president Obama a chimpanzee and to call others commenters "girls."

I'm sure this policy will be uniformly enforced with no bias.

Good to know.